Ride for Dad a roaring success

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Fundraiser for Prostate Cancer research reaches $54,000 total to beat $40,000 target

More than 150 motorcycle enthusiasts helped raise over $54,000 in support of the Prostate Cancer Fight Foundation during Swift Current's second annual Telus Motorcycle Ride for Dad.

If you heard the roar of motorcycle engines on the weekend you weren’t alone. 

More than 150 bikers were making their way around Swift Current on June 7 as part of the second annual Telus Motorcycle Ride for Dad.

The Swift Current charity ride aims to help raise money for prostate cancer research and awareness.  It’s one of only two such events in the province, and this year they managed to raise around $54,000, well above their goal of $40,000.

“We’re really happy,” Ride for Dad co-chair Brent Watson said of the response.  “It’s been overwhelming.  The support has been overwhelming to say the least.”

Last year’s event was hampered by heavy rain, but the skies stayed clear for most of the day, allowing attendees to enjoy a motorcycle poker rally.

 

The bikers say it’s an enjoyable way to raise money,

“This one is very fun,” said two-time rider Rhonda Kolskog.“They do have a prostate cancer survivor (recognition) at the end of the ride, after the presentations are all done, and that can get pretty emotional, but for the most part it’s pretty fun.”

Prostate Cancer has affected three of Kolskog’s family members, which helped draw her attention to the disease.

“My grandfather died of prostate cancer and I have an uncle and a cousin who are both going through it right now too,” she said.  “There seems to be lots of fundraisers for breast cancer.  This is probably one of the only organized events for prostate cancer.”

Ride for Dad started in 2000 in Ottawa, and there are now 30 such rides being held this year across the country, with an additional 16 rides featuring either snowmobiles, ATVs or watercraft.

The money is used mostly in research, and everything raised in Saskatchewan stays in the province, giving the fundraisers even more motivation.

“I think everybody that’s here likes the money to stay here, rather than go to a large organization, then gets split up,” Watson said.

While raising money and getting out on the highway are the two biggest concerns, raising awareness is not lost on the participants.  Almost everyone at the ride has been affected by prostate cancer in some way, and they want to make sure other men know what solutions are available.

“There’s lots of guys that figure they don’t need to go get tested, but it’s a two minute test,” Kolskog said.  “Just go and get it done.  It’s that easy.”

Geographic location: Swift Current, Saskatchewan

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